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Welcome to the Official Schedule for RightsCon Toronto 2018. This year’s program, built by our global community, is our most ambitious one yet. Within the program, you will find 18 thematic tracks to help you navigate our 450+ sessions

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Last updated: Version 2.3 (Updated May 15, 2018).

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Wednesday, May 16 • 12:00 - 13:15
Lightning Talks: Human Rights for the Digital Age: Hearing from Leaders

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Session Emcee: Naman Aggarwal

Disrupting Human Rights Activism Through Crowdsourcing

Hamed Behravan

The lightning talk is about an already developed platform called Movements.org that aims to disrupt human rights activism through crowdsourcing. The p2p platform enables ordinary users with specific skills to provide pro bono assistance in a variety of fields to human rights defenders or victim of human right violations who need help. The session will be dedicated to introducing this unique human rights matchmaking platform to the human rights community with the goal of recruiting more participants, who are willing to help human right defenders in closed societies. The talk will also focus on the importance of decentralizing human rights activism and increasing the global pool of talented individuals or committed organizations that are willing to provide pro bono assistance to those who need it the most.

Defending freedom of speech under the Venezuelan Regime (NGO RedesAyuda)

Melanio Escobar

It´s a session about our latest communication project called Humano Derecho Radio Estación (www.humanoderecho.com), an online radio that broadcast 24/7 radio shows about human rights using rock music as a pillar and a way to engage this topics with new audiences, also give a full context about what's really happening in Venezuela and how we, the civil society and front line defenders, are fighting against censorship and the persecution from the Maduro's regime.

ICT solutions for under siege Syria
(Roia NGO)

Speakers: Khaled Shabaan & Steve Dixon

How can you harness the power of ICT to help those living under an actively hostile regime, committed to repressing the human rights of its citizens?

Roia, a grassroots NGO, has been working since 2012 to address this question in the context of the Syrian conflict. This session will share the experiences of Roia in setting up alternative, secure communications infrastructure in besieged areas. Discussed will be the challenges, successes and lessons in connecting citizens and activists to the internet, establishing coordination communications systems for medical responders, and supporting livelihoods for youth through ICT freelancing.

Leadership in the Digital Age: a model for diverse, tech-savvy, empathetic leadership
(Ontario Digital Service)

Katy Lalonde

In this Lightning Talk, Chief Digital Officer and Deputy Minister Responsible for Digital Government for the Province of Ontario, Hillary Hartley, will set out a new model for public service leadership.

Rooted in empathy and diversity, Hartley will challenge public and private sector leaders to embrace a new, more ‘flat’ approach to mobilizing teams and delivering meaningful outcomes for people. During her lightning talk, Hartley will outline the key skills required of leaders in an open, digital and inclusive organization operating in a digital age.

Human Rights are a concrete reality. How can we ensure that the digital world serves that reality?

John Ralston Saul

The first digital wave seemed to favour human rights and freedom of expression. The second wave, which may be nearing its end, seems to have favoured authoritarianism. Is there a strategy for ensuring that a third digital wave will rebalance the digital phenomenon again in favour of human rights and freedom of expression?

avatar for Hamed Behravan

Hamed Behravan

President, Movements.org
Leverage technology to empower civil society and human rights activists achieve their desired goals. Movements.org is our latest product. Some other project examples include providing circumvention technologies and digital safety training, virtually training human right defenders... Read More →
avatar for Steve Dixon

Steve Dixon

Communications Manager, Roia
Steven is the M&E Manager and acting Communications Manager at Roia, a small Syrian NGO working to harness the power of ICT for positive social impact. A background in international affairs, peacebuilding and development, Steven's work has taken him around the world for several different... Read More →

Wednesday May 16, 2018 12:00 - 13:15 EDT